I remember Steve Jobs’s exact words when he said “today Apple is going to reinvent the phone, iPhone is a revolutionary and magical product that is literally five years ahead of any other mobile phone” and he was right although the industry believed otherwise.
There was a time when Apple and Google entered strategic alliances through the virtue of which iPhone had Google as its primary search platform by default. It was not uncommon to see Steve Jobs and Eric Schmidt praising each others companies and products but then all of a sudden it all changed when Google launched the Google G1 smart-phone.
While iPhone was the shiny and revolutionary phone that everybody loved to have, Nokia’s attempts to enter the smart-phone race were futile and as one of Nokia’s ex-managers put it this was largely due to “Nokia’s soviet-like bureaucracy that stifles innovation.” Kai Nyman, the former chief architect elaborated upon that and said “there were plenty of years to make Symbian better. We could have rewritten the whole code several times over. We had the resources and the people. But we didn’t do it.”
Nokia’s complacency culture left an open gap in the phone market and Google being Google sneaked in smartly with its open-source Android OS. As illustrated below, Neilson’s research shows how Android OS crept in and made a sudden leap in the smart-phone market which has endangered Apple’s positioning and market share.
While the battle for smart-phones were/are being fought by Apple and Google head-to-head, Microsoft, a historical rival of both Google and Apple was no where to be seen in the smart-phone spectrum. While Microsoft was totally out of the bigger picture, Nokia’s CEO Stephen Elop caused havoc when in one of his memo’s he refered to Nokia’s Symbian OS a “burning platform.”
Today things have changed, Nokia and Microsoft have just announced that they have entered a major partnership that will see Nokia adpot Windows Phone 7 as it is principle platform. According to today’s announcement, Nokia will “contribute its expertise on hardware design, language support, and help bring Windows Phone to a larger range of price points, market segments and geographies”. Furthermore, Nokia will adopt Bing for search. In a joint statement Steve Ballmer and Elop said “today, the battle is moving from one of mobile devices to one of mobile ecosystems, and our strengths here are complementary.”
Here is the official video of today’s announcement:
So what does today’s announcement mean and how will it impact your business? Mobile phones are going to play a major role in on-line commerce, the sooner you prepare and adopt it the better it will be. Obviously, I am not saying that each and every single business out there needs a mobile website or a mobile application, but what I am saying is that it is important for you to look into this and not ignore it. The best way to find out whether you should invest in a mobile website or application is to look at your Google Analytics data for example. If your data shows that your business attracts a large number of mobile phone users then you should talk to a mobile website design agency to find out what your options are.
Click on the screen shot below to find out how you can find the amount of mobile traffic your website attracts.